web analytics
December 21, 2014 / 29 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Beyond Bias: Media-Fabricated News


A recent Gallop Poll found that 56% of Americans think the media’s coverage of events in Iraq is inaccurate, nearly two-thirds of those believing that the media portray the situation as worse than it is. A biased, always bad-news-baring mainstream media trying to discredit our war effort is a disgrace. But worse is the blatant manufacturing of news through editorials disguised as reports.

A case in point was the “reporting” in the Los Angeles Times on the execution of Saddam Hussein.

While even liberal bastions such as The New York Times and the Washington Post ran objective headlines – “Dictator Who Ruled Iraq with Violence is Hanged for Crimes Against Humanity” and “Saddam Hussein is Put to Death,” respectively – the Los Angeles Times loaded its headline with editorial content: “Hussein Executed – And Iraq Braces.”

Hussein was indeed executed, but the idea that “Iraq Braces” is pregnant with antiwar innuendo. A less subtle headline might have read: “Hussein Executed – One More Bad Event In A Bad War.”

To back that up, the Times ran a second A-section story headlined: ”Impact of Hussein’s death likely to be limited.” Not even characterized as “analysis,” this story “reported” that Hussein’s execution “seemed to be much less than the historic turning point many once had anticipated.” (As a former writing professor once counseled, beware the passive word “seemed.”)

The Times – perhaps following the example of the Iraq Study Group – cherry-picked its experts to offer but one point of view.

It quoted a former State Department official that the Hussein execution was “not what it might have been.”

And a spokesman for the U.S. Institute for Peace who opined that “I just don’t see this as a big turning point.”

And someone from the Endowment for International Peace who called the execution a mere “sideshow.”

And, as a topper, “Mideast specialist” Juan Cole, the uber-leftist University of Michigan history professor who has likened the state of Israel to a puppeteer with a fearsome “level of control over a branch of the United States government.” Cole warned that Hussein’s execution would likely provoke violence as, “To the Sunnis, it will look like just one more slap in the face.”

Presenting an extreme leftist like Juan Cole as an academic offering impartial scholarly analysis is bad enough. But the Times’ “report” offers not one alternative view.

Couldn’t find one? The Times could have asked former CIA Director Jim Woolsey, who called Saddam’s execution “a positive watershed.” Or military expert Ralph Peters, who characterized the hanging as “an important milestone.” (As opposed to the grim milestones the mainstream media endlessly “report.”) One significant impact Hussein’s execution will have, Peters wrote, is that “no dictator will sleep quite as soundly now.”

The Times could also have included “man-in-the-street” opinions from Baghdad – like that of Suad Shakir, who, according to the Washington Post, said that “People will be relieved” by Saddam’s death. Or of a Baghdad barber who said of Saddam: “He does not deserve to be alive.”

But when you’re writing an editorial – including one disguised as a news story – you seek authority in support of your view.

Let’s concede that there’s reason for bad feelings in your gut over the execution of Saddam – and over Iraq generally. A video showing thugs of Iranian agent and terrorist Moqtada Sadr rebuking the former dictator as he stood on the gallows could make you wonder about the people we’re fighting for. So could this recent report about our Iraqi “allies”: As politicians, religious leaders and other soldiers watched, five Iraqi soldiers bit the heads off live frogs while a sixth slit a live rabbit’s stomach and “ate its heart before tossing the carcass to his comrades to chew on.” All in “a display of courage.”

You can pardon Americans for a lack of enthusiasm at the thought of blood and treasure spent on liberating barbarians.

But none of that excuses an agenda-driven media or rehabilitates the self-inflicted damage to that media’s reputation.

A footnote: Four days after the Times report, the paper ran a small wire service story that contained this observation: In reaction to Hussein’s execution, Sunni Arabs “have taken to the streets in mainly peaceful demonstrations.”

So much for Juan Cole’s Mideast expertise.

About the Author: Steven Zak is an attorney and writer in California. He has written for publications including The Atlantic, the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Beyond Bias: Media-Fabricated News”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Christian Israeli Kay Wilson and Mohammed "Zionist" Zoabi.
Christian Terror Victim Protected ‘Mohammed the Zionist’ from Terrorists
Latest Indepth Stories
President Shimon Peres receives the Congrssional Gold Medal.

“Mr. Prime Minister, declare a unilateral ceasefire! Remember, Blessed is the peacemaker!”

KidSport-Everybody-Is-A-Winner1

“D-e-t-e-r-m-i-n-a-t-i-o-n!”

This masked "soldier" carrying a machine-gun is not part of a terrorist organization, according to the European Court of Justice.

Hamas is continuing to prepare its next war against Israel instead of improving conditions in Gaza

UN Flags

If the UN Grants national recognition to Palestine, why stop there? Tibet, Chechnya, Basque…

The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.

Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof

What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.

Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.

More Articles from Steven Zak

It’s a given that television networks put profits above pride, but ABC has reached a new low in its sponsorship of Rosie O’Donnell. The daytime talk show host recently joined the world of “truthers” – people who believe that 9/11 was an attack staged by this country’s own government.

A recent Gallop Poll found that 56% of Americans think the media’s coverage of events in Iraq is inaccurate, nearly two-thirds of those believing that the media portray the situation as worse than it is. A biased, always bad-news-baring mainstream media trying to discredit our war effort is a disgrace. But worse is the blatant manufacturing of news through editorials disguised as reports.

Here’s a syndrome for the books: A renowned filmmaker gets stinking drunk.

Angry and bizarre words then spew forth – from the lips (or pens) of others.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/beyond-bias-media-fabricated-news/2007/01/17/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: